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Auburn Football Recruiting: Recapping Busy June

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Breaking down the top targets in the 2022 class that made it to campus this past month and where things stand in their recruitments.

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We are almost to the end of June and rapidly approaching the beginning of a new dead period. For the past four weeks, prospects from all over the country have tried to make up for lost time and visit all their top programs. On the other side, college coaching staffs have worked tirelessly over the past month to get their top targets on campus to evaluate them in person. As a result, there’s been a lot of news and shake ups on the trail. Here’s a quite long but hopefully informative breakdown on who all made it to campus for the Tigers in the 2022 class and where things stand in their recruitments.

Commits

Patience is not in large supply amongst a college football fanbase but it’s a virtue Auburn fans are going to have to embrace for the 2022 cycle. The Tigers are currently dead last in the SEC and ranked #71 nationally in large part due to having the fewest commits in the conference. While commitments were down across the board in June as prospects waited to make decisions after taking some visits, Auburn and LSU were the only SEC programs to not land a single commit this past month. That’s likely to change over the next couple of months but it’s easy to see why some fans are getting antsy.

  • 4-star QB Holden Geriner - Auburn’s top ranked commit is locked in with the Tigers. He earned an invite to the Elite 11 camp earlier this month which starts later this week. Unlike Dematrius Davis, this event is the perfect opportunity for Geriner to showcase his strengths. Don’t be surprised if he’s one of the top performers.
  • 3-star CB Jarell Stinson - Stinson took an OV this weekend to the Plains where he reaffirmed his commitment with the Tigers but also stated he plans to continue to take visits this fall. I still think he’s likely to stick with the Tigers but if Auburn makes a move on some other top targets it also wouldn’t shock me to see the both sides mutually part ways. For now though I think he’s solid.
  • 3-star LB Powell Gordon - Gordon was Auburn’s last commit in the 2022 class. His recruitment is likely to be very quiet as he’s not a recruiting camp guy and he’s not expected to visit anywhere else. But if you get a chance to check out Auburn High this year on a Friday night, do it so you can see this kid play.

Spots To Fill

I made some amendments to the scholarship breakdown from my last post. Mainly I dropped the number expected at running back, tight end, and defensive back. I am becoming convincingly more convinced that the staff’s plan is to take less than 20 high school prospects this cycle to leave room for portal additions without affecting 2023 class numbers. That’s just a guess on my part right now but something to monitor moving forward.

  • QB: 0-1
  • RB: 1-2
  • WR: 3-4
  • TE: 0-1
  • OL: 5-6
  • DL: 3-4
  • OLB: 1-2
  • LB: 2-3
  • CB: 2-3
  • S: 1-2

Official Visitors

I should warn you that this list is not going to be bubbling with positivity. While the Tigers hosted quite a few official visitors, many highly rated, it does not appear those visits necessarily greatly improved Auburn’s chances in many recruitments for various reasons. Some targets moved down Auburn’s board after the staff got to meet with them in person while others were trending elsewhere before they even decided to visit the Plains. Either way, here’s the rundown on who made it to campus in an official capacity this past month.

  • 4-star LB Robert Woodyard (Bama Commit) - Turns out Auburn’s OV list this past weekend was a little more star studded than expected. The long time Bama commit made his way to the Plains for an official visit. Auburn doesn’t exactly have the greatest history of flipping instate kids from Saban but it’s interesting he’s still taking visits. He’s cousins with 2020 Auburn signee Lee Hunter.
  • 4-star CB Laterrance Welch (LSU Commit) - While committed to LSU, Welch has not completely closed the door on his recruitment. He took multiple OVs elsewhere this summer including one to the Plains. Derek Mason is working this recruitment hard and I expect Welch to return to Auburn’s campus this fall. But pulling off the flip will be difficult.
  • 4-star RB Tre’Vonte Citizen - I am keeping a close eye on this recruitment. The blue chip back out of Louisiana is regarded as an LSU lean but he took an official visit to Auburn over the summer and the better looking Tigers seemed to impress. There’s no set decision date yet but the longer this recruitment goes the better for Auburn in my opinion.
  • 4-star RB Omarion Hampton - Auburn legitimately seemed to impress Hampton and his family on his official visit. Unfortunately, I am not sure the gap between Auburn and UNC was short enough to overcome. Penn State appears to be the Tar Heels top challenger at the moment. A decision is likely to come in July.
  • 4-star LB Shemar James (UF Commit) - James surprised a lot of folks last week when he committed to Florida over Alabama and Auburn. The Tigers had a lot of ground to make up in a short amount of time but many folks, myself included, thought it was Alabama they were chasing. I am not sold this recruitment is over but the Gators have had some success recently recruiting the Mobile area.
  • 4-star WR Darrius Clemons - This is a big time battle between Auburn, Penn State, and Oregon. Clemons still has two official visits to use and he plans to take both in the fall. It’s crucial the Tigers find a way to get the Oregon native back on campus this fall.
  • 4-star OLB Tyreese Fearbry - Fearbry made the long trip from Pennsylvania to the Plains this past weekend and walked back his earlier statement that the Nittany Lions were the team to beat following the trip. However, I am skeptical Fearbry will leave his home state but if he does it would likely mean good news for the Tigers.
  • 4-star S Tre Donaldson - Auburn appeared to make a big move with the 2 sport star out of Tallahassee, FL. Donaldson plans to play both football and basketball at the next level. He took his basketball official visit this past month and it seemed to make a major impact on Donaldson. Florida was the presumed favorite but Bruce Pearl wow’d Donaldson and his family. He also enjoyed his conversations with new Auburn defensive coordinator Derek Mason. I imagine he’ll use his football OV during the fall. This is definitely a recruitment I think Auburn fans should be keeping a close eye on moving forward.
  • 4-star OLB Trevion Wiliams (FSU Commit) - At one time I thought Auburn was the team to beat for Williams. But both sides appear to have cool on each other despite an official visit and the Mississippi native elected to commit to the Noles this past weekend.
  • 4-star S Emory Floyd - I don’t really understand this recruitment right now. Floyd was seen as an UGA lock at one point then a major AU lean and now he has a top 3 of Georgia, Florida, and South Carolina. There’s been a lot of twists and turns thus far so it still wouldn’t shock me if he ended up in AU’s class but it also wouldn’t shock me if he signed with a program not on the radar right now.
  • 3-star S Ja’Kobi Albert - Like Floyd, I saw Auburn as the team to beat in this race not that long ago. Now it appears the two sides are looking elsewhere. Kentucky has reportedly surged to the lead in Albert’s recruitment. Hard to keep track of who is actually near the top of Auburn’s board and who isn’t right now.
  • 3-star CB Marcus Allen - I know for a fact that Allen is high on the staff’s board but unfortunately it doesn’t sound like they will be able to overcome the Tar Heels’ lead. The Tigers made a move when he officially visited but his last OV this summer was to UNC and it sounds like Mack Brown is close to snagging another stud.
  • 3-star TE Micah Riley-Ducker - Riley-Ducker had a lot of good things to say about Auburn following his official visit. The question though is whether he really wants to leave the midwest. I lean towards no as it appears the Hawkeyes are surging.
  • 3-star DL Kaleb Artis - This is shaping up to be another Auburn-Penn State battle. Is distance from home isn’t a sticking point for Artis and his family, I like Auburn’s chances but this is no slam dunk.
  • 3-star OT Jacob Hood - Hood was the only offensive tackle to officially visit the Plains over the summer and unfortunately it doesn’t sound like the Tigers made much of a move. If UGA wants him he’s likely to end up in Athens, if not keep an eye on Miami.
  • 3-star CB Myles Pollard - I haven’t seen any reports on Pollard following his visit to Auburn so I am interested to see if the Tigers made a big move. As I have stated previously, I think Pollard is a blue chip talent who would make an impact early for the Tigers.
  • 3-star DL Maxie Baudoin IV - This has been a very quiet recruitment. Baudoin took only a single official visit this summer and it was to the Plains the very first weekend in June. Auburn appears to be the frontrunner but is Baudoin a take? Is he even interested in making a decision anytime soon? Not sure on either of those question but this is a name to monitor over the next couple of months.
  • 3-star WR Jay Fair - Fair took three official visits this summer to TCU, Florida, and Auburn. However, the Gators seem to be making others a priority so this is shaping up to be a Tigers/Frogs battle. TCU has been considered the leader for while now though Auburn has surged following his recent visit. I still think distance from home wins out but this is a race that is close as a decision approaches.
  • 3-star LB Micah Pollard - Pollard has very suddenly jumped to the top of the Tigers board. The Florida native had an incredibly disruptive junior campaign and could end up playing outside or inside linebacker at the next level. He’s also cousins with fellow Auburn target 4-star DE Caden Story. Bryan Harsin finds himself battling his predecessor in Orlando for that talented pair.
  • 3-star S Jaylen Lewis - Like Floyd and Albert, I thought Auburn was the clear team to beat for Lewis. But also like Floyd and Albert, it now appears unlikely he’ll end up in the Tigers’ class. I think Lewis, like Floyd, would prefer to play corner at the next level but Auburn wants him at safety. He also wants to play with fellow Tennessean 3-star Anthony Brown. Those two are likely to end up either at Arkansas or Indiana.
  • 3-star K Alex McPherson - The one official visitor I do feel most confident will end up being a Tiger is McPherson. The Gators were viewed as the Tigers toughest competition but they elected to take a commit from a different kicker last week. A decision is likely to come soon and I’d be very surprised if Auburn wasn’t the pick.

Unofficial Visitors

This list is by no means an exhaustive look at who visited Auburn’s campus unofficially in June but it should at least highlight the biggest names to visit. I think you’ll see a number of prospects on this return for official visits this fall or in January.

  • 5-star S Kamari Wilson - Wilson made the trip as part of the IMG bus tour. He spoke highly of the Tigers’ coaching staff but I am highly skeptical Auburn is a factor at all in this recruitment. All Dawg most likely.
  • 5-star DT Mykel Williams (USC Commit) - There was some optimism in Auburn that the Tigers might have become a factor in his recruitment after a good visit with Nick Eason. But it turns out there was just too much ground to make up. The five star instead made a somewhat surprising decision to commit to the Trojans over Alabama, Georgia, and others. I don’t think that recruitment is over but USC’s NIL presentation has been a hit with recruits thus far.
  • 4-star DT Khurtiss Perry - It won’t be easy but this is the major Auburn-Alabama recruitment I think the Tigers have the best chance of winning. The Tigers’ new staff has been working had to make some big inroads in Montgomery. Landing Perry would be a huge boost to those efforts.
  • 4-star DT Tyre West (UGA Commit) - West was a somewhat surprising unofficial visitor earlier this summer. There’s a good chance he’ll be back on campus for an official visit this fall. Definitely someone to monitor as the early signing period approaches.
  • 4-star OT Elijah Pritchett - When Pritchett did not include Auburn in his top 8 I assumed this was a recruit to stop tracking. However, he made it to Auburn’s campus as part of a 7 on 7 competition last week and told InsideTheAuburnTigers’s Jason Caldwell that he plans to be back for an unofficial during the fall. I still think this is a longshot but maybe the door is cracking open again for the Tigers.
  • 4-star OT Riley Quick - I really like where Auburn sits with Quick. The bigger question honestly is whether he’ll be playing for Bryan Harsin or Butch Thompson. Quick is a legitimate 2 sport star but it’s hard to see a future where an athlete splits his time between pitching and playing offensive tackle. Both programs want Quick and have made that clear to the top 200 player. Alabama has not offered but if they do that could shake things up.
  • 4-star WR Antonio Williams - Williams’s recruitment has been relatively quiet in terms of real intel into where he’s leaning as the big time wideout is considering a number of top programs. He made it to Auburn’s campus earlier this summer now the Tigers need to get him back for an official this fall. South Carolina is viewed as the current favorite but if Clemson offers it could be game over.
  • 4-star WR Barion Brown - Brown is another highly rated recruit who took an under the radar visit to the Plains. Alabama is viewed as the favorite.
  • 4-star DL Caden Story - The Tigers appear to be the favorite to land the stud defensive lineman out of Lanett. UCF might be the Tigers toughest competition right now as they too have made Story and his cousin Micah Pollard priorities.
  • 4-star WR Jayden Gibson - One of the fastest rising prospects in the 2022 class made it to Auburn’s campus this past weekend. It’s unlikely he leaves the state of Florida but Auburn has a shot at securing an official visit this fall.
  • 4-star OL/DL Tae Woody (FSU Commit) - To me this is the first real whiff of the class. Woody became an Auburn priority very quickly after the new staff was hired. However, the Noles have a ton of momentum on the trail right now and were able to get the athlete on campus for an OV this past weekend and secure his commitment. I don’t see the Tigers giving up on this race though.
  • 4-star WR/CB Marquez Dortch (OM Commit) - The Rebels commit never made it to campus this summer but confirmed with AuburnUndercover’s Keith Niebuhr he plans to take an official visit to the Plains this fall.
  • 4-star LB Stone Blanton - The Mississippi State baseball commit was supposed to make it to campus this summer but I am not sure if that ever happened. Either way, he’s someone I am monitoring over the coming months.
  • 4-star RB Damari Alston - Alston took an unofficial this past month and is likely to officially visit this fall. LSU was thought to be the leader following his OV to Baton Rouge but I actually think UNC is probably the team to beat right now. It seems Auburn, Florida, Penn State, and UNC are all battling for the same 3-4 backs right now so don’t be surprise if a domino falling one way helps another school land a different target in the coming months.
  • 4-star WR Amarion Brown (Rutgers Commit) - The Florida native left the Plains with an offer early in June and seemed impressed by his visit. He stated at the time he plans to return for an official in the fall.
  • 4-star CB Benjamin Morrison - Most saw this as a Notre Dame/Michigan/Washington battle heading into June but it could be shaping up to be an Iron Bowl showdown for one of the top ranked players out of Arizona. Derek Mason is friends with Morrison’s dad and that relationship definitely won’t hurt the Tigers chances.
  • 4-star WR Omari Kelly - I am not really sure where things stand between Kelly and Auburn. I don’t know that the new staff is all that high on the instate blue chipper. There’s also a good chance Kelly could end up on defense at the next level. If UGA wants him they could very easily snag the playmaker out of Trussville,
  • 4-star OL Qae’shon Sapp (FSU Commit) - Mike Norvell has been a problem for the Tigers early this cycle. Despite visiting the Plains twice this summer, Sapp did not include Auburn in his final 4 before choosing FSU.
  • 3-star OT Eston Harris - I was hoping Auburn could get Harris on board this summer but that is looking unlikely. He released a top five of Auburn, Alabama, Georgia, Florida State, and Oregon recently. I am not sure he’s a take right now for the Tide and Dawgs. What looked like a slam dunk recruitment for the Tigers earlier this cycle has quickly turned into a battle that is unlikely to end anytime soon.
  • 3-star LB EJ Lightsey - It’s been hard to pin down Auburn’s linebacker board but Lightsey made it to campus for an in person workout with the staff and is reportedly likely to return for an official visit this fall.
  • 3-star RB Quinshon Judkins - Judkins spent more than two hours meeting with new Auburn head coach Bryan Harsin on his unofficial visit. Penn State though is coming hard after the Pike Road standout and is a legitimate threat. He’ll likely officially visit both programs this fall.
  • 3-star DL RJ Moss - Moss camped at Auburn in hopes of earning an offer. It didn’t come but new defensive line coach Nick Eason reportedly gave Moss some feedback on what he can do to eventually earn one. If the Tigers ever do decide to offer they have a great shot at becoming a top contender in his recruitment.
  • 3-star OLB Joshua Jacobs - Auburn outside linebackers coach Bert Watts reportedly spent a lot of time with Joshua Jacobs when he camped with the Tigers and that lead to some speculation that an offer could be forthcoming. That’s not yet happened but it still wouldn’t surprise me if one eventually came. Tennessee might be the team to beat right now.
  • 3-star QB Tevin Carter - It seems uncertain whether or not Auburn will take 2 quarterbacks in this class but new Auburn OC Mike Bobo has been evaluating a number of targets this past month including Carter. The Memphis native has yet to be offered by the Tigers but is someone to monitor over the coming months.
  • 3-star WR Camden Brown (Pitt Commit) - This was a bizarre recruitment. Auburn was one of the first major Power 5 programs to offer Brown. He then camped with the Tigers and earned offensive MVP honors. An official visit was set for the final weekend of June and a decision was likely to come on July 1st. Then suddenly Auburn cancelled the official visit, stopped recruiting Brown, and he took an OV to Pittsburgh where he committed this past weekend. Needless to say there’s very little real intel coming out of the Plains right now.
  • 3-star OL Drew Bobo - Drew earned his offer at a camp earlier this month. He did the same in Athens making this a likely Auburn vs Georgia battle down the stretch. Kentucky is the wildcard to keep an eye on.
  • 3-star QB Conner Harrell - Harrell is another quarterback who is being evaluated as a possible option for a 2nd QB spot. However, if Auburn wants to make a move they should do so soon as he impressed as UNC and the Tar Heels look ready to take the Thompson standout.
  • 3-star S Caleb Wooden - The younger brother of standout Auburn defensive end Colby Wooden, Caleb was a standout performer at an Auburn camp earlier this June. He returned for an unofficial on Saturday and yesterday landed an offer from Derek Mason. Doesn’t sound like he’s in a hurry to make a decision but obviously the Tigers are likely the team to beat.

War Eagle!